Catching Up

Del Toro

Del Toro Shoes has been known for its quality slippers and driving loafers. Next month they'll make their first foray into wingtips with a blue-soled camo brogue, as well as a white-soled navy version. Valet. caught up with CEO Matt Chevellard and discussed the importance of buying quality footwear, their upcoming pop-up shop in Palm Beach and how sneaker culture influenced the brand's go-to-hell aesthetic and attitude.

Basso driving shoe, $295

 
You've said you're inspired by
sneakerhead culture, how so?

I was born in Italy but moved here when I was 7, and have been a serious sneakerhead ever since. Aside from amassing over 200 pairs, I just love what the culture stands for. That is, expressing yourself and your individuality through certain colors or patterns. At the same time, it's walking down the street and not wearing the same shoe or outfit that every other person is. Sneakers became exclusive and special because they focused on the details which ultimately what resonates most. I took that same notion and applied it to the classic shoe world because I felt like classic silhouettes needed some of the sneaker culture's edge behind it.

Velvet slippers, $285

FYI

The velvet slipper is also known as the "Prince Albert" slipper, named after the royal figure, who married Queen Victoria in 1840.
You started Del Toro because velvet slippers can fetch exorbitant prices, yet, at around $300, they're definitely an investment, what kinds of things do you think are worth splurging on?

Well, it's one thing executing an utopian idea, and another thing facing the reality of that process. My initial intent was creating a much more accessible velvet slipper, and while that hasn't deviated, it was hard juggling that with quality that we were comfortable with. Handmade in Italy, our shoes are built to last and are priced very reasonably. It is difficult to find any Made in Italy shoes priced under $400, so we are proud of our product and what it stands for. I think spending that extra buck on quality and substance is always justifiable.

And tell us about the upcoming pop-up shop.

I'm really pumped because it's our first stab at a retail store. I teamed up with a childhood friend from Palm Beach who started a women's line called Rae Francis. She and I have curated a collection of local designers and I'll be showcasing all my new products and will have over 6 men's styles available, our first women's collection, as well as offer several exclusive collaborations that we are debuting for the holiday season.

The Del Toro x Rae Francis Wanderers Pop-Up Shop opens November 1

 

Published on

October 13, 2011
 

Written by

of Valet.

 

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